Clinic Egg Donor
External Egg Donor
No Greek Citizenship
International IPs since July 2014
About Surrogacy in Greece
The surrogates undergo extensive psychological and medical screening and are engaged on a trial basis for about 6 months before they are presented to an IP couple as a potential surrogate mother. The clinic provides a nurse to monitor and care for the surrogate from the time she first enters the program until at least 2 months after delivery of the child.
Throughout this journey all communication between you and the clinic will be copied to us and to ipt Law. If you have a medical issue or question then you will send the email to the relevant clinic staff but copy us and ipt Law. If you have a question or issue concerning administration, travel, legal issues or financial matters then you will communicate with us and we will engage with the clinic as appropriate.
When a payment instalment falls due the clinic will send an invoice to us for your attention. We will first validate that the instalment is payable under the contract and if so pass it on to you for payment. You will make the payment by international bank transfer and send a copy of the payment approval to the clinic and us.
At around month 7 of the pregnancy we will start talking to you about your travel plans and ipt Law will prepare your citizenship and passport applications and prepare the first draft of the surrogate mother’s affidavit. We will send the draft affidavit to the clinic and Greek lawyer so they can provide it to the surrogate mother for her review.
Immediately after the birth of your child ipt Law will lodge your citizenship application, application for DNA testing and forward the completed passport application to you for your lodgment. You will be given detailed and complete instructions on how to prepare all documentation and the steps you must take. The Australian High Commission in London is responsible for all citizenship applications made for children born in Greece.
Upon your return to Australia we will meet with you to ensure everything has been completed and then leave you with ipt Law to complete the Family Court application for parenting orders.
- IPs obtain medical evidence of their inability to have children (letter from doctor in their country)
- IPs provide this and other personal particulars to us so a file can be opened
- IPs sign an agreement with the clinic
- IPs are offered a surrogate mother
- IPs will be assigned a Greek lawyer to prepare surrogacy agreement and court documents working with IPT Law
- IPs travel to Greece to execute the surrogacy agreement, undergo testing and assessment by the clinic and commence the court application
- IPs will meet all relevant clinic staff and provide their instructions on embryo transfer to the clinic
- IPs provide gametes or embryos if applicable
- Court application is lodged
- IPs will be notified of the court decision after approximately 8 weeks
- Surrogate medical preparation commences in anticipation of a favourable court decision
- Embryo transfer takes place after the Court delivers its judgment
- IPs will be informed of a tentative FET date which may change slightly as the date approaches
- Throughout the pregnancy we will be with you to talk about your concerns and discuss and resolve any medical, administrative or legal issues that arise
- At birth the judgment together with the surrogacy agreement and other documentation are presented to the hospital and civil registry for the issue of a birth
- Citizenship and passport for the child based on the IPs citizenship are issued quickly
A Summary of Greek Surrogacy
Availability of Surrogates
MFI has achieved a pregnancy success rate of 45% with egg donors and gestational surrogates.
About the Mediterranean Fertility Institute
We work with Dr Ioannis Giakoumakis and his expert team at Mediterranean Fertility Institute in Chania, Crete. Crete is the largest of the Greek islands and Chania is a beautiful and historic city about 30 mins flying time from Athens. There are at least 6 flights a day between Athens and Chania and the fares can be as low as €45.
Mediterranean Fertility Institute (“MFI“) has been providing surrogacy services to IPs from EU countries for the past 7 years and egg donation and IVF services for even longer. Since July 2014 MFI has opened its doors to non-EU clients for surrogacy services.
MFI has the most experience in surrogacy matters throughout Greece and Dr Giakoumakis is frequently speaking at international conferences on the medical aspects of surrogacy, egg donation and IVF.
Together with MFI and IPT Law we provide the complete package of services for a surrogacy arrangement in Greece –
Egg or sperm donation, embryo shipment, surrogate selection, surrogacy agreement, court authorisation of surrogacy, embryo transfer, pregnancy management, delivery of your child, registered birth certificate, citizenship application, DNA testing, passport application, surrogate documentation for Family Court of Australia.
MFI sources surrogate mothers directly from residents of Chania, Crete. Given the open borders within the EU the surrogate mothers can be citizens of any EU country.
The surrogates enter the program and are “quarantined” within the program for 6 months while they undergo medical and psychological screening and background checks.
This includes the Minnesota test which comprises 300 questions and takes 4 hours to complete. All surrogates recruited must have had at least one child born without complications and have finished having their family.
During the pregnancy the surrogate has a nurse allocated to her who assists her with transport and shopping and monitors her health, well-being and lifestyle throughout the pregnancy.
The surrogate mother has medical tests with MFI every 10 days and blood tests and a conversation with the MFI surrogacy coordinator every week.
MFI has a different approach to the surrogacy process than most clinics. MFI does fresh embryo transfers unless the IPs have shipped frozen embryos from another clinic in which case they will do frozen embryo transfers (“FET“).
If IPs have used an egg donor then any embryos not used in the first transfer will be frozen and stored for the IPs. In the event that the first transfer is unsuccessful Dr Giakoumakis’ practice is to change the egg donor for the next cycle. This means a new egg harvesting, creating new embryos and another fresh transfer.
MFI will do 3 cycles, each time with a different egg donor, then after the third unsuccessful transfer they will change the surrogate. Dr Giakoumakis’ philosophy is that if it didn’t work then you need to change something before you try again. MFI has a reducing fee for subsequent attempts – each subsequent attempt is cheaper than the last unsuccessful attempt.
The clinic will transfer 1 or 2 embryos to the surrogate based on the doctor’s advice and the decision of the IPs with the surrogate’s consent. The babies are delivered at a private clinic in Chania by caesarean and the surrogate mother has no contact with the baby unless it is initiated by the IPs.
If the baby is born at 34 weeks or later then the private clinic in Chania is suitable. If the baby is premature <34 weeks then it will be transferred to the University Clinic in Heraklion for neo-natal intensive care.
After the birth of the child the surrogate mother remains in the program under the care of the clinic for a further 4 months to monitor her physical and mental well-being.
We are sensitive and considerate to the emotions that often accompany reproductive problems, and treat each patient with compassion and with every consideration for the family’s privacy.
Hi, I'm Ioannis Giakoumakis, the Clinical Director of Mediterranean Fertility Institute, IVF Greece.
Why We Recommend The Mediterranean Fertility Institute
- The legal certainty of the Greek law which is accountable under the European Union law
- The ready availability of surrogate mothers in Greece
- Their extensive experience in IVF, donor and surrogacy programs
- Good pregnancy success rates
- Single and double embryo transfers
- Reducing cost of subsequent FET attempts
- Protocol of changing egg donors if unsuccessful FET
- Clinical experience and growing number of surrogacy cycles
- Beautiful destination within Europe for waiting with your newborn baby
The cost of the surrogacy program in Greece will be determined by the specific program you undertake eg: Egg Donor, Frozen Embryo Transfer etc. When you meet with us, or speak with us over the phone, we will learn of your particular circumstances and then give you a fixed price for the program relevant to you.
The approximate total price for surrogacy in Greece is EURO €75,000. There is a price list for additional services which comprise optional services (eg:PGD/CGH) and subsequent egg donor cycles and embryo transfers.
There is no fee payable to Global Surrogacy. We earn a commission from the clinic which varies in amount but is less than 5%.
The clinic fees are payable to the clinic in 5 or 6 instalments – contract signing, approval by the court, 13 week heartbeat ultrasound, 23 weeks, 32 weeks and at birth.
The legal fees are payable in 5 instalments based on the work performed – execution of agreement, signature of surrogacy agreement, preparation of citizenship and passport applications, finalization of surrogate affidavit, registration of birth certificate. You should speak to IPT Law directly regarding the legal fees.
The total price includes:
- All agency fees for surrogates and egg donors;
- All surrogate compensation and anticipated expenses for a routine pregnancy;
- All medical fees payable to the Clinic for IVF services and first trimester monitoring;
- All legal fees payable to Greek lawyers for agreements and parentage orders;
- All legal fees payable to IPT Law for services including the initial parts of parentage orders in Australia;
- The project management fee for Global Surrogacy.
An Overview of Surrogacy Laws in Greece
In Greece altruistic surrogacy is legal and well regulated. The most advantageous aspect of surrogacy law in Greece is that there is judicial authorisation of the process prior to any embryo transfer which settles the respective rights of the IPs and surrogate mother prior to a pregnancy. In effect the parentage of the child(ren) is determined by the court decision authorising the surrogacy process.
The surrogacy agreement only needs to deal with issues not covered by Greek law but it cannot be in conflict with Greek law and the surrogate mother retains all of her civil rights (eg: right to decide on abortion) within the confines of Greek law. There has been no case reported in Greece of any dispute between surrogate mother and IPs.
Although it is altruistic surrogacy Article 2 of Ministerial Decision No. 36 (16 Apr 2008) states that the surrogate mother can receive compensation for lost wages and if she is unemployed she is entitled to what she would receive as an employee considering her qualifications. The permitted payment to the surrogate is €10,000.
Under Article 1464 of the Greek Civil Code the woman who applies for and is granted the judicial authorisation to enter into a surrogacy arrangement (Intended Mother) is presumed to be the mother of the child(ren). Her husband or de-facto partner is presumed to be the father of the child(ren). The IPs are the parents of the child(ren) from the time of conception – no ifs no buts! There is no capacity for the surrogate mother to change her mind or make any application for access or custody of the child(ren).
The child will be entitled to Australian citizenship and then an Australian passport. The citizenship application is lodged online and processed by the Australian High Commission in London. The passport application is processed in the Australian Embassy in Athens and Berlin.
For reasons that are best explained by ipt Law we recommend that the IPs collect a DNA sample from their child WHILE IN GREECE regardless of whether or not the Department of Immigration and Border Protection request a DNA test for citizenship purposes. The surrogate mother must accompany you and the child to the medical clinic when the DNA sample is taken from the child.
You should plan on being in Greece for 4 weeks but in practice you could wait anywhere within the Schengen zone of EU until you have your child’s passport. Your child will be permitted to travel internationally on airlines only after 2 weeks of age.
Knowing the legal process and being fully prepared before the birth of your child will mean you spend the minimum amount of time in Europe.
Under Greek law the citizenship of a child is determined by the citizenship of its parents. Therefore in a surrogacy case a child born in Greece will not acquire Greek citizenship but rather the citizenship laws of the country of which the IPs are nationals will apply.
However, there is a safety net in circumstances where the child cannot obtain citizenship from its foreign intended parents. In those circumstances the child(ren) can obtain Greek citizenship. This is very important for IPs from countries that will not grant citizenship to children born through surrogacy arrangements.
The Civil Registry responsible for issuing birth certificates has no real discretion and must recognise the judgment of the Court and record the IPs names on the child’s birth certificate. There is no amendment of a birth certificate as happens in other jurisdictions, the first and only birth certificate issued records the names of the IPs as parents. In fact the way in which the matter is documented and recorded there is no mention of a surrogacy arrangement.
Some commentators have suggested that the authorities from the IPs’ home country may not even be aware that the birth was through a surrogacy arrangement. In the case of Australian citizenship there is an express question on the application form – “was the child born through surrogacy”. You must answer this question honestly. It can be quite apparent to authorities that the Intended Mother did not give birth to the child if she travelled to Greece a few days before the birth.
Greek law does not provide for any degree of anonymity for the surrogate mother. In the event that the child born through a surrogacy arrangement in Greece in the future wants to identify the surrogate mother then the child is entitled to oblige the clinic to reveal her identity.
The surrogate mother also enjoys the right to privacy under Greek law and these two considerations would be in conflict here and the outcome would be determined on the facts of the particular case.